Sting operation deals with bad bee-haviour in east Leeds

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The weather may have been warm but doors and windows remained firmly closed in Garforth as a huge swarm of bees laid siege to part of the east Leeds community.

The 2,000-strong honeybee swarm began hovering over Firthfields Early Years Centre and the adjoining home of the Garforth Neighbourhood Elders Team (NET) on Wednesday afternoon.

Youngsters attending the early years centre were ushered indoors following the arrival of the unwelcome visitors.

And the bees continued to cause problems today, with a coffee morning having to be cancelled at the Dover Street base of Garforth NET.

Garforth NET centre manager Monica Walker said: “The swarm was absolutely massive and it was making a horrendous noise. The whole situation was really quite frightening.

“At first the bees were hovering about a metre above our building.

“We had some volunteers working in our garden and they came inside pretty sharpish!

“Then, this morning (July 10), the bees had attached themselves to the hedges in our pond area. They had basically covered them.

“There’s a ginnel that runs alongside the hedges and we had to put signs up warning people to keep out.”

Local beekeeper Chris Clowes has been called in and he was due to remove the bees today using specially-constructed boxes before taking them to one of his hives.

Chris said the bees would have been looking for a location to set up a new colony when they descended on Dover Street.

Garforth isn’t the only place that has had problems with bees in the last few months.

A 5,000-strong swarm brought part of central London to a standstill when it landed en masse on the front window of a branch of Topshop in the middle of May.

And, earlier this month, another large swarm wrapped itself around a pedestrian crossing box in south Liverpool.

* Garforth NET provides support that helps hundreds of people maintain their independence in the community.

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